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The Persistence of Subjectivity:
On the Kantian Aftermath

by Robert B. Pippin

ISBN 0521613043 / 9780521613040 / 0-521-61304-3
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

The Persistence of Subjectivity examines several approaches to and critiques of the core notion in the self-understanding and legitimation of the modern, "bourgeois" form of life: the free, reflective, self-determining subject. Since it is a relatively recent historical development that human beings think of themselves as individual centers of agency, and that one's entitlement to such a self-determining life is absolutely valuable, the issue at stake also involves the question of the historical location of philosophy. What might it mean to take seriously Hegel's claim that philosophical reflection is always reflection on the historical "actuality" of its own age? Discussing Heidegger, Gadamer, Adorno, Leo Strauss, Manfred Frank, and John McDowell, Robert Pippin attempts to understand how subjectivity arises in contemporary institutional practices such as medicine, as well as in other contexts such as modernism in the visual arts and in the novels of Marcel Proust. [via]